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Monday, 30 March 2015

Somerset Birding

A trip up to Somerset today with my mate Ken Montandon with our first stop at the  Greylake NR to look for a reported Green-Winged Teal but alas no was no sign of it today and not a lot else to report either with the best birds seen being a female Merlin and a Little Ringed Plover .
So we then made our way to the Ham Wall Reserve where we saw a Great White Egret , 2 Western Marsh Harrier , numerous Cetti`s Warbler and 2 booming Great Bittern , we then went across the road to Shapwick Heath and saw 6 more Western Marsh Harrier with a male and female talon gripping in flight , great to see and the first time that I have seen this ! we then headed back to the car and had another Great Bittern booming .

Merlin ( Falco columbarius ) . Greylake NR . Somerset


Tuesday, 24 March 2015

The Masked Intruder

I had a look at Bowling Green Marsh in Topsham this morning but it was dead !! and all I saw was 3 male and a female Northern Pintail , a male and female Tufted Duck and the normal waders for this time of year with 200+ Black-Tailed Godwit , 20+ Bar-Tailed Godwit , 50+ Dunlin , 10 Red Knot and 2 Common Greenshank , I then heard that the Penduline Tit were still showing over at Darts Farm so I went across and was treated to great views of these smart little birds , these birds have now been in the area since last December ...amazing ! and on the way back out a Stock Dove was on the grass but it only stayed for a short while .

Penduline Tit ( Remiz pendulinus ) . Darts Farm . Topsham . Devon




Stock Dove ( Columba oenas ) . Darts Farm . Topsham . Devon


Sunday, 22 March 2015

Spotted Redshank

Not a lot to report today but a look at Goosemoor got me a Eurasian Nuthatch a first for the site for me , and a Common Raven , then a look from the viewing platform at the Clyst Estuary turned up 3 pair of Red-Breasted Merganser , the 2 winter plumaged Spotted Redshank , 3 Common Greenshank , a Common Kingfisher and a nice surprise a European Green Woodpecker ...but the best thing seen today was United beating the Scousers...revenge for last year yessssssssss !!

Spotted Redshank ( Tringa erythropus ) . The Clyst Estuary . Topsham . Devon



Saturday, 21 March 2015

Egyptian Goose

A look at Goosemoor in Topsham this morning got me a pair of Egyptian Geese and a Common Raven , I then walked down to the viewing platform on Bowling Green Marsh and had a look at the Clyst Estuary but there was not a lot to be seen with only 5 Little Egret . numerous Dunlin , 6 Grey Plover , 2 Spotted Redshank , 1 Common Greenshank and a Common Chiffchaff .

Egyptian Goose ( Alopochen aegyptiaca ) . Goosemoor . Topsham . Devon



Friday, 20 March 2015

Little Ringed Plover

A look at the Clyst Estuary from the viewing platform in Bowling Green Marsh this morning got me a female Goosander , 3 Common Greenshank , 2 Spotted Redshank , 1 Pied Avocet , 1 Grey Plover and a Common Kingfisher .
I then went down the Otter Estuary NR to look for a reported Little Ringed Plover and on arrival the bird was very distant but patience paid off as after about half an hour the flew over and landed a lot closer....1st for the year...very nice !

Little Ringed Plover ( Charadrius dubius ) . The Otter Estuary NR . Devon



Thursday, 19 March 2015

Lesser Spotted Woodpecker

This morning I went out to some woodlands in the Teign Valley and was lucky enough to see two Lesser Spotted Woodpecker and as you can see the one in the photo is a nice male but I couldn't get enough on the other bird to sex it ! also seen was a European Green Woodpecker , 5 Eurasian Nuthatch , 3 Grey Wagtail and 3 Goldcrest , later in the day I had a look at Bowling Green Marsh in Topsham and saw a male Garganey ! I expect it is the same bird that I saw the other day but this time of year you can never be sure .

Lesser Spotted Woodpecker ( Dendrocopos minor ) . The Teign Valley Woodlands . Devon



Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Bonaparte`s Gull

The lure of a 1st winter Bonaparte`s Gull that was showing well at Radipoll Lake in Dorset had myself &  two mates Ken & Andy making the trip there in hope of seeing it ! there was no problem there as the bird a 1st winter was showing very well constantly feeding , there was also 5 Cetti`s Warbler and 6 Common Chiffchaff at the site .
We then went across to Portland Bill where my first Little Owl of the year was added to my list , also seen were 3 Northern Wheatear , a Firecrest and a Common Raven , we then headed for home and on the way 2 Brown Hare were showing very well in a field close to the road near the village of Swyre , a great end to a good day .

Bonaparte`s Gull ( Chroicocephalus philadelphian) . Radipoll Lake . Weymouth . Dorset




Brown Hare ( Lepus europaeus ) . Nr Swyre . Dorset



Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Garganey

An hour spent at Goosemoor in Topsham got me my first Garganey of the year a nice male ( Thanks Keith ) sorry about the quality of the photo but I only had the chance to fire of this shot just before it flew off with some Common Teal , also seen were 5 Common Greenshank , 2 Spotted Redshank and my first singing Chiffchaff of the year .

Garganey ( Anus querquedula ) . Goosemoor . Topsham . Devon


Common Greenshank ( Tringa nebularia ) . Goosemoor . Topsham . Devon


Saturday, 14 March 2015

Spring Migrants

An early morning look at the Exminster Marshes got me my first spring migrants of the year ! with 5 Common Sand Martin hawking over the ponds and 3 male and a female Northern Wheatear seen in the field by the Lions Rest , there was not a lot else to be seen but 3 Goldcrest , a Common Chiffchaff and a Mistle Thrush were nice for the day .

Northern Wheatear ( Oenanthe oenanthe ) . The Exminster Marshes . Devon


Tuesday, 10 March 2015

Bowling Green Marsh

A look at the marsh this morning got me 3 male and 3 female Northern Pintale , 3 male Common Pochard , 6 Bar-Tailed Godwit , 1 single Avocet with no sign of any others on the Exe Estuary either , 1 Common Snipe , 1 Common Raven and 2 Red Fox , I then walked down to the viewing platform that looks out onto the Clyst Estuary where I saw 2 Common Kingfisher , a Common Greenshank and a Common Gull .

Common Snipe ( Gallinago gallinago ) . Bowling Green Marsh . Topsham . Devon


Red Fox ( Vulpes vulpes ) . Bowling Green Marsh . Topsham . Devon


Sunday, 8 March 2015

Snow Bunting

Out again this morning and today I spent an hour or so with the over wintering Snow Bunting that frequents the sea wall on the Exe Estuary just up from Powderham Corner , I know that I have seen it a few times already but you do not get the chance very often to soak up the beauty of these stunning little birds !! the bird is quite tame and if walkers get to close to it , it just flies a bit further along the wall .. so grab the chance to see this smart little bird before it decides the time has come to leave us !!

Snow Bunting ( Plectrophenax nivalis ) . The Exe Estuary . Devon




Saturday, 7 March 2015

Out again !!!

I was feeling a bit better today so I popped out for a quick look around  my local spots with my first stop at Darts Farm where 2 Penduline Tit were showing very well , also seen were 2 Common Buzzard . a male Eurasian Sparrowhawk and a male Reed Bunting , I then had a look at Bowling Green Marsh but it was low tide so not a lot of birds on the marsh with the best being a male and female Northern Pintail and 3 male Common Pochard , I finished my stint off with a look at the Clyst Estuary where I got my first Mediterranean Gull in Devon this year !

Penduline Tit ( Remiz pendulinus ) . Darts Farm . Topsham . Devon


Thursday, 5 March 2015

Gambia Revisited

Not been feeling to well so not much birding being done so I thought that I would post some more birds of the Gambia .....Hope you enjoy them !

Great White Pelican ( Pelecanus onocrotalus )



Pink-Backed Pelican ( Pelecanus rufescens )


Great Cormorant ( Phalacrocorax carbo lucidus )



Long -Tailed Cormorant ( Phalacrocorax africanus )


African Darter ( Anhinga rufa )



Hamerkop ( Scopus umbretta )